"Hey kids, it's the Hulkster here and this time, you've actually got a date to the prom, you little vanilla midget twerps. You're going with my daughter, Brooke, and I'll be chaperoning. So, no booze, no drugs and no grinding on the dance floor. If you're lucky, you might get a kiss on the cheek and if you're really lucky, you might get to go up to Brooke's room....unless Linda has the house seized by the time we get back. And don't worry little Hulkster, if you can't hang with a Hogan in the bedroom, then let me take some of my little pills and I'll take over for you. I'll just pretend she's my young girlfriend that I can't remember the name of. Meanwhile, we can always take a look at some of my best matches off of my 1st DVD set, Hulk Still Rules (does that sound like a cry for attention or what, brother?)"
1) Hulk vs. Andre the Giant (Shea Stadium, 08/09/80)- 4
I love the look of the open air arena and something about the wind blowing through Andre's large frizzed out mullet makes me really love being a wrestling fan. Hulk never was a champ at selling but something tells me he's really feeling Andre's large overhands. There's not much rope work here and Hulk does some stalling between short bursts of offense by Andre. There are some impressive body slams though by both men and if the majority of WWE's fans had seen this bit of footage, I wonder if WM 3's awesome moment would have been as significant. The match is short and ends with an Andre splash that Hogan tries to save face by kicking out of at 3 even though the ref still counts it. Andre blades like a depressed teenage goth girl for a lariat after the match and I'm left scratching my head on that one.
2) Hulk v. Iron Sheik (MSG, 01/23/84)- 4
This was Hulk's big first title win- never actually seen it before but I really wouldn't have guessed it went a little over 5 minutes. Not very glorious in my opinion. Hogan was all over Sheik from the opening bell and despite a small flurry of strikes and an attempted camel clutch, this was for all intents and purposes a squash. I gave it an extra point for historic signifigance but this can be skipped.
3) Hulk/ Brutus Beefcake v. Macho Man/ Zeus (Summerslam 89)- 5
This was in the aftermath of "No Holds Barred" you know Hogan's first big screen flop? The bad guy actor from the film (Tiny Lister jr. who was fabulous in 5th Element & Friday) starred as the impervious villain wrestler Zeus, and here he reprises the role. Much of his ring time is spend either no selling or choking someone out. Hogan works up a vicious sweat pretty quickly into this affair and it always surprises me how much he puts over these ridiculous joke monster gimmicks more so than good wrestlers- he unleases hella offense on Zeus and sells it big time how much it doesn't hurt him. Savage is great tagging in to Zeus' back and then whispering in his ear to get him back in the corner. Beefcake's work is definitley below par in this and he really sucks at being face in peril. The finish is satisfying enough with Hulk getting the win over Zeus using Sherri's purse. And watch to see how freakin' over Elizabeth is! She almost gets a louder ovation than Hogan.
4) Hulk v. Ben Ortiz/ Angelo Gomez(All Star Wrestling, 01/02/80)- 1
Here's a fun one: a Hogan heel squash with two really scary looking dudes that didn't know the 70's had ended just a week prior. Hogan took his sweet time with these two, poorly executing the gammet of really basic pro maneuvers while the announcers droned on in a monotned voice. This was pretty bad stuff. Hogan looked like a gorilla they were trying to get to paint; just completely brainless and moving incredibly slowly from one spot to the next.
5) Hulk v. Ric Flair (Bash at the Beach, 07/17/94)- 3
This was Hogan's big debut in WCW and it was a big deal at the time; you had the two biggest superstars in the world representing two very distinct styles; WWF was known for characters, big, brawny muscle heads with little ring skill and WCW was known by Ric Flair, who represented the very best in technical prowess. I have to say this match features one of the most selfish performances I've ever seen in my life. Hogan completely shits all over everything Flair does in this match and only really sells a few knees and some chops. He doesn't bump for Flair at all and sells more for Scary Sherri than Flair because she gets invovled at least 6 times! Flair is a professional but you had to know he was pissed beyond all belief. Hogan was actually in shape at this time too but it was apparent his first night in the ring for his new job that he was running the show. It was interesting that they had a slew of sports dignitaries present at ringside such as George Foreman seated next to Antonio Inoki and then a pairing I've been dying to get together, Shaq and Nick Bockwinkel. At one point in the match Flair has to be saved from interference before he got pinned by Hogan's big boot. He wasn't even good enough to get the legdrop. I really have to take a shit on this match.
6) Hulk v. Undertaker (This Tuesday in Texas, 12/03/91)- 3
This was the PPV set up on the fly one week after Survivor Series so Hulk could get his belt back. We are here to review the work but sometimes the political backstage BS floats to the surface and it's hard to ignore. Conceptually, this match looked to have little thought into it. Hulk didn't have much offense outside of punches, rakes and a bodyslam that didn't work and both men were blowing spots left and right. Taker tried to give Hogan a hangman's noose over the top rop from the apron but he slipped and let go of Hogan's head; but it didn't matter because Hulk sold it anyways, bringing his own neck down across the top rope. Later on Hulk was getting his big comeback and whipped Taker into the ropes for a clothesline but it was the top rope who executed the move when Taker got hung up underneath it. Hogan won by grabbing some handfuls of ash and tossing it in Taker's eyes. Really poor stuff.
7) Hulk v. Big John Studd (Puerto Rico, 10/09/85)- 3
This match is a real oddity, it's down in that place where they kill pro wrestlers and during the match it starts raining pretty good. Studd and Hogan are relegated to a bearhug for several minutes until they decide to go outside where Studd gets posted and counted out. You can see how cheap the ring is because once the rain starts, the red canvas starts smearing like paint and gets all over the ref and the wretlers themselves. Hogan and Studd both have a couple of slips which is really funny. I gave it an extra point for being so strange.
8) Hulk v. Nikolai Volkoff (SNME, 10/05/85)- 4
This was a rough and tumble match although it was far too short and devoid of content to be a recommendable. Volkoff always bumps awkwardly but it looks more painful so I like it. Hogan didn't offer anything new in the form of offense during this encounter and most of the heat was coming from the USA/USSR Cold War drama going on at the time but this is moderately enjoyable as a quick, slugfest.
9) Hulk v. Mr. Perfect (SNME, 04/28/90)- 5
Again, a quick encounter not nearly long enough to merit being a World Championship match but Henning, as usual bumps all around Hogan from big overhead haymakers and haphazard lariats. Henning scores with some offense but this is sort of a revenge match from Henning and Genius breaking apart the championship belt with a hammer on the Thanksgiving edition of SNME (which I'll be reviewing next.) We have a typical clean Hogan finish with the boot and legdrop but it's Henning's one of a kind sells that make this bout amusing.
"Alright, brother, hope you enjoyed my really hard work because all you fans know that I bust my ass out there for your enjoyment! Haha, well, I'll stop pulling your chain while Brooke and Linda pull mine, if you know what I mean. Man, I"m a horrible human being. Anyways, I've really made some history here in this little industry but it's my acting that I want to be remembered for. I mean, who else but the Hulkster would have thought about Santa Claus having muscles? Come on, you have got to recognize the genuis of that? Alright, don't forget to sign your prenups and take your MGH, kids!"
**the views in this piece are not shared by all members of Never Hand Over staff